Project Silvia after the honeymoon rusty brembo

Building a project car is one thing, actually living with it is something altogether different. Construction is the realization of a dream, no matter how long, slow, painful, and expensive it may be. But when a project stabilizes (project cars never actually finish), miles and time reveal every mistake and every compromise.

When Proejct Silvia rolled away, for the last time, from the Sport Compact Car garage, it was a thoroughly sorted track machine. Easy to drive, reliable, and devastatingly fast. For a while, it seemed, there was nothing Project Silvia couldn't do well. 2000-mile road trips? No problem. Towing rally cars over mountain passes? Faster and safer than a U-Haul. Tear up the track? It didn't even need a cool-down lap…

Project Silvia towing Project Rally Beater 510
For a while, it seemed there was nothing Project Silvia couldn't do. Even towing other cars to the track was a cakewalk .

But there were limits, and it took a surprising test of automotive durability to finally bring project Silvia to its knees: Parking.

For two solid years, project Silvia barely moved. It sat in a secure, but un-shaded parking lot behind Mazda R&D. The Southern California sun and toxic air were unforgiving for the Krylon paint job, and once the car was dusted off and put back into service, other chinks developed in car's once pristine armor.

Follow the links to see what we learned:

Project Silvia lead JIC Strut story

What we should have done to maintain our JIC struts, and how we're fixing our mistakes now.


Project Silvia once we went black we never went back

The sad, ugly truth about spray painted cars


Project Silvia, how not to screw up your wheel bearings like I did
The short version: RTFM


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Thursday, July 09, 2009 10:45 AM
Great stuff Dave, its nice to finally see an update on the Silvia.
Sunday, July 12, 2009 10:38 AM
The only SCC magazines STILL on my shelf... have either project silvia updates or something written about turboes and suspension by Mike.

Glad to see the car revived, Dave!
yo vanilla
yo vanillalink
Thursday, July 16, 2009 2:15 PM
I gave it a 5 because I'm surprised to see you actually still have the ol beast! Some of my favorite articles involve this car.
Miles (San Antonio)
Miles (San Antonio)link
Monday, July 27, 2009 6:29 AM
Kept the SCC magazines with this project and Project 300ZX only. Didn't toss them out of respect but don't have them in plain site. I haven't seen an update on this car since the great bumper fire of old.

Keep up the good work, senor.
Thursday, November 19, 2009 5:26 PM
So this is what happens when a bunch of angry Primedia writers gets bored with leftover project cars. I'm damn glad Dave Coleman and Mike Kojima are writing again.
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